• Nick Zacharias

Île-Perrot Cavaliers show their mettle


PHOTO COURTESY JEAN-CLAUDE GAGNON

(Rear, left to right): Jean-Claude Gagnon (Head coach), Thierry Philippot (Assistant coach), Dodjy Dominique, Mathis Degardin (Assistant capitain), Daniel Philippot, Romeik Rodney, Stéphane Ranger(Assistant coach). (Front, left to right): Daniel Kouchev, Antoine Dicaire, Xavier Legault, Sebastian Bulgac, Vincent Perron (Captain), Jeremy Gagnon, Joshua Bruchental, Youness Hajoui (Assistant capitain).

The young men of the Île-Perrot Cavaliers Midget Travelling basketball team have earned bragging rights as the 2017 champions of the Optimist Club Tournament in Deux-Montagnes. On the weekend of November 24 to 26, the Cavaliers were victorious at a tournament that saw seven AA teams from the region vying for the top spot in the division for 14 to 15-year-olds.

The tournament featured some tightly contested games. In early rounds, the Cavaliers defeated the hosting Monarques of École secondaire Liberté-Jeunesse 55-51, then immediately went on to top the St-Bruno Cougars with a score of 45-40. This second victory demanded a show of heart, coming directly on the heels of their first match. According to head coach Jean-Claude Gagnon, “Our team was amazing in their perseverance, dedication and courage by playing two games, one after the other, with only 10 minutes of rest between games.”

The boys came back the next day to face the Collège Saint-Jean-Vianney Dragons for the final round. This time the Cavaliers fought their way to victory with a final score of 49-45, taking the title by a nail-biting two baskets after a challenging and exciting weekend. Joshua Bruchental of Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue was named the team’s MVP of the tournament.

In a season that runs from October to April, the travelling team is focused largely on tournament play. They’ve had a mix of wins and losses this year to date, and with such a strong showing in Deux-Montagnes, these aspiring NBA stars will look to build on their momentum and showcase their skills in two big tournaments to come this winter.

“It’s a privilege to have such a great team,” says Coach Gagnon, “Don’t let go boys, it’s just the beginning!”

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